The End (or beginning)

It has now been just over a month since we landed in the US and what a month it has been. Thanks to our Southwest Airlines points and gracious friends, we visited Chicago, Indianapolis, Sarasota, Tallahassee, Denver, Boulder, Estes Park and New York City. It has been a whirlwind of visiting friends and family, going to two weddings and making plans for the future.

I wanted to sit down and reflect on the trip in an attempt to extract meaning and then share that with our audience. The most common questions are:
What was your favorite part?

The Philippines, and more specifically El Nido. 

What was the biggest challenge?

A tie between food poisoning in the jungles of Northern Thailand and our run in with a giant deer in the middle of the night in Gili T.

What were you most excited for upon returning to the US?

Family and Friends and … a New York City Everything Bagel with Cream Cheese

While they make for nice soundbites, I can’t help but think that those questions and answers miss the point. What Liz and I did together wasn’t just an accumulation of experiences, foods, cities and countries. It was a journey of discovery. We challenged ourselves to do something hard and in that process we learned more about ourselves and each other than most couples do in decades.

Reflecting back, the rewards and the disappointments are the same thing. The trip was about creating experiences that conjure up the expression “Holy Shit!”. I can’t count the number of times I turned towards Liz to see the expression on her face, to see how she was handling the madness in good times and bad. So with a little deeper thought, the real answers are…

What was your favorite part? 

Building an unbelievable team. Sharing a journey with someone that helps me to become a better person. Knowing that there is no problem that we can’t solve together.

What was the biggest challenge?

The biggest challenge is finding the courage to take the trip in the first place. I have heard people say that they wish that they could do a similar trip. If you are one of those people, I challenge you to think about what is really stopping you. Like anything else in life worthwhile, it only takes one thing… sacrifice. Whether related to travel or anything else, don’t be a person that wishes to do things that are possible. Prioritize them and make them happen, or recognize that they aren’t that important to you and prioritize the things that are. Your life is a summation of the choices you make and not the wishes you hold.

What were you most excited for upon returning to the US?

Sharing the rest of my life with Liz. She is the person I want on my side through good times and bad. She is the person that I want to handle the madness with. I want to look to her face in the “Holy Shit!” moments that lie ahead.

From the bottom of our hearts, thank you for reading along. It meant the world to us to share our trip and get such positive feedback on how much fun the blog has been to read. At the end of the day, we hope we’ve inspired you to take a risk and follow your dreams whether it’s a trip like this or something else. We’ve met people of all ages and positions in life that are making their dreams come true, so it’s never too late.

Now we are back in the states, looking for jobs and starting back up again. It was a blip in time…but oh what a blip in time. 

3 thoughts on “The End (or beginning)

  1. You brought tears to my eyes! Beautiful words. Paul and I enjoyed following your adventure completely and look forward to the adventure we are about to embark on.
    Your words of encouragement mean a great deal to us!!

    Like

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